A great star in the cinematic world is about to go out. According to Studio Ghibli, the academy award winning director and studio co-creator, Hayao Miyazaki, will retire from filmmaking after his next film, THE WIND RISES. Ghibli president Koju Hoshino announced the intention of Miyazaki to retire and pointed towards a conference next week for him to “say goodbye to all of you”.
THE WIND RISES is currently playing at the Venice Film Festival and sees the story of the designer of Japan’s World War II fighter planes. Admittedly, Miyazaki did retire after directing PRINCESS MONONOKE but returned for the 2003 winner of Best Animated Feature SPIRITED AWAY and continued to direct, produce and write for Studio Ghibli through such hits as HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE and PONYO as well as a host of short films.
No exaggeration, this is like if Martin Scorsese or Quentin Tarantino announced they would stop working. If THE WIND RISES proves to be Miyazaki’s last film we can likely expect a special celebration of his work (which has been consistently magnificent) whatever form that may take. A special Blu-ray release of his Ghibli hits would be spectacular, though one thing is for sure: Anime as a whole may never quite be the same again.
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